The Ultimate Thanksgiving Dinner: Inside Staff Meal at A Voce Madison

by Katherine Sacks
Shannon Sturgis
November 2011

While most people share Thanksgiving Day around a family table, for kitchen crews all over the globe, it’s time spent with another type of clan—the restaurant group. When New York City’s A Voce Madison began serving its holiday menu last year, 2011 New York Rising Star Chef Hillary Sterling set out to create a staff meal worthy of the day for her tight-knit team. Taking a break from the Italian delights of the restaurant’s menu, Sterling personally prepared an impressive spread of Mexican-inspired dishes (she made enough food to last a week and spread out over three tables).

Chorizo and Cornbread Stuffing by Hillary Sterling of A Voce - New York, NY

Mole-rubbed and roasted chicken took the place of the turkey, chorizo dotted the mushroom stuffing, and sweet potatoes got an update inside crispy tacos (folded courtesy of Sterling’s dish crew). The meal—enjoyed by the entire staff at a seated lunch inside the dining room at A Voce Madison—was such a big hit, the pasta virtuoso is planning an even bigger and better version of the Mexican meal for this year’s lunch. Sterling’s south of the border Thanksgiving, with its moist and sweet cornbread stuffing, rich pecan pie (with just the right kick of heat), and obvious TLC, makes the perfect morale booster for a staff about to face the insanity of holiday dinner service. 

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